Is Neck Cream Necessary? Here’s What The Experts Say
7 minutes read
We dedicate our days to looking for the best skincare products for our faces and following extensive skincare routines. Yet, we often overlook the part that actually is inclined to age faster – the neck.
Targeted treatments do work. So when you isolate your routine like specific treatments for treating lip wrinkles, hand and foot treatments or places such as the neck – these will make a difference to the look and feel of that specific area.
Beauty Daily HQ turned to leading skincare experts Dr Anastasia Therianou MD, PhD, NHS Consultant Dermatologist, Nishtha Patel, Clinical Nutritionist, and Charlotte McHale, Clarins Training Manager, to share their tips on building the best neck care routine and finding out the answer to Google’s burning question: “Do neck firming creams work?”
Is neck skin different from face skin?
Yes. Experts say the skin on the neck is relatively thinner than the skin on the face and the rest of the body. So it is pretty similar to that of the delicate eye area.
It also has fewer hair follicles, which means it secretes less oil and is incapable of retaining much moisture leading to dryness. Dryness leaves room for folds, creases, and lines to form.
In addition, neck skin is equally exposed as the skin on the face to UV, making it susceptible to other forms of premature ageing and sun damage can be prevalent – find a repair regimen here. Let’s not forget the constant stress the fragile skin on our neck undergoes. Consistent friction from rollnecks, winter scarves and jewellery.
Be wary of fragrances that also contain high levels of alcohol or synthetics that can age the skin on the neck. Experts say perfume-covered skin becomes more susceptible to sun damage and age spots. Good thing there are natural fragrances on the market that are non-photosensitive which means it is safe to use even under sun exposure leaving you with no skin irritation or reactions. Do you know the products you can (and shouldn’t) wear in the sun? Read here.
To make matters worse, the neck is one of the body parts that reveal your age first.
Read next: Can You Reverse Sun Damage?
Unprotected sun exposure is one of the main reasons for premature ageing of the neck.
What causes neck sagging and wrinkles?
Before we go to the prevention, let’s first pinpoint the things we usually do that contribute to neck sagging and wrinkles to develop.
Dr Anastasia Therianou MD, PhD, NHS Consultant Dermatologist, says, “Unprotected sun exposure is one of the main reasons for premature ageing of the neck.”
However, the one thing we all share is that we’re a society glued to our smartphones.
Experts say that looking at our phones repeatedly can contribute to premature sagging and lines.
Apart from neck skin losing its elasticity, our neck skin is also susceptible to premature dark spots and hyperpigmentation as smartphones emit blue light, which causes oxidative stress to the skin structures. In addition, constant everyday movements also contribute to neck wrinkles.
Dermatologist-approved ways to take care of your neck
Dr Therianou doesn’t think the neck area needs any extra or special care than that of the face. This is only the case if you religiously apply skincare products extended to the neck.
Charlotte McHale, Clarins Training Manager, agrees: “You can take your products down to the neck, and they will work similarly on the face. Your face skincare products will suffice.”
Dr Therianou and McHale share three tips to ensure your neck is always protected and keep neck wrinkles at bay.
Tip #1 Never forget to put sunscreen on your neck.
Beauty Daily recommends Clarins UV PLUS [5P] Anti-Pollution Translucent, £34. It is an all-year rounder and powerful sunscreen with SPF 50 that wards off harmful environmental aggressors such as UV exposure, pollution and blue light. Apply regularly as the last step of your skincare routine and before applying your makeup.
Tip #2: Use products with retinoids and antioxidants such as vitamin C and apply them to your neck area.
Mchale swears by the Double Serum. It is loaded with 21 antioxidant-rich plant extracts and vitamin C from turmeric, renowned for its exceptional anti-ageing properties as its vital ingredient. This cult-favourite serum visibly reduces wrinkles and promotes firmer and younger-looking skin. Followed by your preferred moisturiser.
Before heavier creams, use day and night or mix one pump with your foundation for an extra dewy glow. Then, apply two big pumps under your appropriate weekly mask if your skin needs the ultimate boost.
Tip #3: Exfoliate to slough away dead skin on the neck but use a face scrub.
For younger-looking skin on your neck, McHale recommends exfoliating with a face scrub rather than a body scrub.
“You have to treat it cautiously. Don’t exfoliate your neck more than you’d exfoliate your face. Once or twice a week, depending on your skin type.”
Tip #4: Incorporate food groups that boost collagen synthesis and repair
Nishtha Patel, Clinical Nutritionist, recommends: “Eating a diet rich in protein and antioxidants to repair free radicle damage and amino acids and antioxidants. In addition, food rich in vitamin C, e.g. citrus fruits, bell peppers and dark leafy vegetables, helps collagen production.
Yellow veggies, like carrots and sweet potatoes, have beta carotene-rich Vitamin A, which can help restore damaged collagen. Tomatoes are high in antioxidants and lycopene, which fight free radicals. Egg whites are rich in lysine and proline, both amino acids that help form collagen.”
Do you really need a neck cream?
McHale says because the skin on the face and neck is structured differently, there will come a time when the two don’t behave or appear in the same way anymore.
“At that point, it is best to introduce and invest in something more dedicated and tailored to the specific issues you may have on your neck area.”
Adding: “Do actively assess the situation. Does it feel smooth? Does it feel rough? Does it need more nourishment? What’s the sun damage like? Are you getting pigmentation? Also, around the chest area, if you have a large bust, you often have a vertical line that starts to appear due to your sleeping position, which is equivalent to an expression line on the face. But, again, it is a regular crease that doesn’t bounce back as quickly, so those are the signs you would want to look out for and be your deciding factor on getting a neck product.”
In some cases, as soon as you hit age 40, you start seeing more evident wrinkles and sagging, some un-glamourously referred to as ‘turkey neck’. However, remember that not everyone is the same. For example, a 40-year-old smoker has different skin from a non-smoker, read how smoking affects the skin and ways to avoid it. But in general, experts say neck wrinkles appear at the age of 40+.
To combat this, Clarins laboratories have produced Extra-Firming Neck & Décolleté, designed for the 40+ age range. This anti-wrinkle rejuvenating neck cream helps restore a firm, youthful-looking neck. The inspiration behind this neck cream is the movement of the sunflower’s stem.
A bit of trivia – did you know what makes the sunflower head follow the sun’s rotation without its stem breaking?
This is thanks to the auxins, substances found on the stem. Clarins uses this extract in the Extra-Firming neck cream to improve skin resilience and boost the skin’s resistance to daily bending and rotating while protecting against harmful indoor and outdoor pollutants.
For people who want to banish the appearance of age spots and want to improve skin texture, lift, and reduce neck fine lines and wrinkles, try Super Restorative Décolleté and Neck Concentrate.
Unsure which neck product would suit you or confused about the skincare products that work for your specific needs and lifestyle? Book your free skincare consultation and speak with one of our Beauty Coaches for a personalised virtual skincare consultation to answer all of your beauty questions.